If you or someone you care about has been involved in a car accident caused by drunk driving, please do not wait to seek help from a qualified drunk driving accident attorney in Goldsboro. Immediate action is wise in order to preserve witnesses, evidence and to properly investigate the accident scene and the circumstances surrounding the accident. Get help from a Goldsboro drunk driving accident attorney to protect your rights.
The experienced personal injury attorneys at Strickland Agner Pittman can help you if were the victim of an accident that involved drunk driving on the part of another driver. You may be entitled to compensation even if you were a passenger in a vehicle driven by someone impaired by alcohol.
We understand how devastating a drunk driving accident can be, and how lives are completely turned upside down as a result. Our attorneys and staff are very knowledgeable when it comes to taking care of our clients who were injured as a result of a drunk driving accident.
Having represented many clients who were injured in motor vehicle accidents, we have extensive knowledge of the system that deals with these types of cases. Let us put that experience to work for you. Contact us now for a free consultation and legal advice about your potential case.
How Does a Drunk Driving Accident Happen?
There are a number of ways drunk driving accidents occur, and there is no one way to successfully combat the problem. Drinking alcohol causes impairment in individuals’ reaction times, judgment and sense perceptions. These impairments, even when slight, can lead to devastating consequences while driving a motor vehicle.
A fraction of a second in slowed reaction time can lead a driver to fail to apply the brakes or swerve in time to avoid an impact. Such slowed reaction times can also lead to the failure to see upcoming dangers, such as sharp turns or obstacles in the road.
Falling asleep while driving and being distracted by other passengers or cellphones are also leading causes of accidents in which drunk drivers are involved. Poorly lit roads, potholes in the pavement, other faulty conditions such as defective traffic lights or construction zone debris, and failure to salt roads in winter weather can contribute to drunk driving accidents. When this is the case, we investigate the totality of the circumstances and identify all possible sources of liability.
Dram Shop and Social Host Liability in North Carolina
Many drunk driving accidents are caused by excessive drinking that could have been avoided. When bartenders or wait staff continue to serve a customer when he or she is visibly intoxicated, and an accident occurs a result, the bar or restaurant that served the driver could be held liable for damages as well.
There is a law known as the Dram Shop Act that holds restaurants, bars, clubs and other establishments liable for serving too much alcohol to their customers who end up causing an accident. The act also applies to establishments that serve alcohol to underage drinkers.
If it is discovered through investigation that the driver of a vehicle involved in an accident was served by an establishment after the customer was obviously impaired or to an underage drinker, that establishment and its employees could be included as defendants in a personal injury lawsuit by a victim of the accident. Often, dram shop liability comes into play when a fatality has occurred in a drunk driving accident, and the establishment’s insurance company will be called upon to pay the injured victims.
This of type liability may also extend to individuals, such as homeowners who throw a party and serve alcohol to their guests. Serving alcohol to minors may also be a source of social host liability for damages caused by an underage drunk driver.
Civil and Criminal Liability in Goldsboro Drunk Driving Cases
Some injured accident victims in Goldsboro mistakenly believe that since the driver who collided with their vehicle wasn’t charged with DUI or beat DUI charges in court, they won’t be able to prevail on a lawsuit for their injuries. This is not true, as criminal liability and civil liability are independent of each other.
It may help, of course, if a driver is found guilty of a DUI or some other criminal offense related to the accident, but it is not required for success. It helps because it shows the civil court that the driver was impaired at the time of the accident. However, if the other driver was not found guilty of crime, that does not mean that they can’t be held civilly liable.
The civil court case deals with monetary damages resulting from the driver’s negligence. The criminal court deals with whether the driver committed a crime. These are two separate legal matters. The fact that there was some alcohol involved in the driver’s system when the crash occurred may be evidence that the drunk driver was at fault or partially at fault.
Hurt by a Drunk Driver in the Goldsboro Area? Contact Our Attorneys Now
Our Goldsboro drunk driving accident attorneys will meet with you personally to discuss your case in depth. We will answer your questions and provide you with a framework of how we can pursue your car accident claim after reviewing the facts.
We are committed to helping victims of drunk driving accidents recover the maximum amount of financial compensation that they are entitled to. We do not charge for our legal services unless we recover money for you.
Contact us now to schedule a free consultation with no strings attached.